Profits deteriorated due to the monthly salary system… Kakao directly managed taxi restructuring
Three years ago, synergy was created through the alliance and direct management.
The gap has widened significantly, and now it is only cost burden
Is the referee the player? Concerns about fairness regulation
Difficulty in selling because price conditions are not met due to employment problems
In the end, it is likely to switch to a high value-added, public service project
The reason Kakao Mobility has maintained its direct taxi business even though its profitability has fallen is that synergies with other businesses such as affiliate taxis can be expected. However, unlike in 2019, when the business was first launched, the size of affiliated taxis far exceeds that of directly managed taxis, and the burden of regulations and costs associated with the operation of direct taxis has increased, leading to an inevitable change.
◇ Directly managed 900 units for the third year, affiliated with more than 30,000 units, raising = According to the industry on the 21st, synergy with the affiliated taxi Waygo Blue, which was launched at the same time just three years ago when Kakao Mobility started its direct taxi business. was expected to pay This is because other taxi corporations or private taxis that participate in participating taxis can be actively operated by directly operating taxis that are not sufficiently secured to raise awareness among users and to experiment with various platforms combined with the platform. Affiliated Taxi is a business in which Kakao Mobility makes a contract with taxis and provides the right to use the brand Kakao and service quality management. Through this, Kakao Mobility takes 3-4% of taxi revenue as a commission.
As a result, in the beginning of the project, the combination of direct-managed taxis and affiliate taxis had a positive effect in attracting new affiliated taxis, but since then, the affiliated taxi business has grown to a level where it can run on its own without a direct-managed taxi, and the utility of the direct-managed taxi business has fallen significantly. lost. Kakao Mobility’s affiliated taxi ‘Kakao T Blue’ started with 100 units in 2019 and skyrocketed to 16,000 units in 2020, and increased to 30,000 units last year. Since then, the number has continued to increase, and according to industry sources, it is known that the number is currently around 35,000 units. In terms of profitability, TJ Partners, a directly managed taxi operator, is making a loss every year, but KM Solution, a member of the taxi company, turned to a profit of 2.39 billion won in net profit in 2020, followed by 9.87 billion won in net profit last year, showing rapid growth. there is.
◇Risk needs change, but… Obstacles in employment and corporate value issues = It is evaluated that the regulatory issue of Kakao Mobility that emerged last year also played a part in this restructuring. Kakao Mobility suffered from various controversies such as unreasonable business expansion such as flower delivery, abuse of power such as raising call rates, and suspicion of driving calls to Kakao Taxi. An industry official said, “It is not a publicly discussed issue yet, but TJ Partners is concerned that the referee plays the player.
However, it is reported that the situation is not suitable for the sale of the corporation in the pursuit of restructuring. The biggest stumbling block is the employment problem, in which drivers hired directly by Kakao suddenly lose their jobs. Drivers are highly likely to complain because the sale of taxi companies does not end with simply buying and selling, but involves changes in working conditions such as garages. For example, if a taxi corporation with a garage in Mapo is sold to another company in Gangdong, and the place of work is changed, it will be difficult for drivers to maintain their existing jobs. In fact, it is known that some taxi corporations affiliated with Kakao will have to change their location if the rental period of the garage has recently ended and they are sold. In addition, there is a possibility of resistance as the existing monthly salary system, which Kakao Mobility has adhered to, is converted to a private payment system. This is because the payroll method operates according to the principles adopted by the new legal entity.
Another problem is that the price conditions are not right because the situation in the taxi market is very different from when Kakao Mobility first bought a taxi corporation. An industry official said, “In 2019 alone, the price per corporate taxi license was over 50 million won, and I know that Kakao Mobility was bought at 65 million won.” It is difficult to sell to,” he said.
◇ “New business model or strengthening public nature” = In the end, even if the corporation is sold, it is most likely to sell only a portion or to focus on new mobility services that Kakao Mobility can differentiate. On the same day, Kakao Mobility introduced ‘RSE’, a new revenue model for affiliated taxis, and announced that it was first introducing and testing directly-managed taxis. RSE is an infotainment platform business that shows real-time routes or affiliated content such as dramas, animations, and news on the back seat of a vehicle and generates advertising revenue through them. An industry official said, “Now, as a taxi business itself, maintaining direct taxis has no meaning. I want,” he predicted.